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Real Estate

Voice Activated: Do You Talk to Your Tech?

RisMedia Consumer News - May 15, 2018 - 2:58pm

How many of us are talking to our tech on a regular basis?

Ken Olmstead at the Pew Research Center recently highlighted the fact that nearly half of U.S. adults (46 percent) say they use voice-controlled assistants and applications to interact with smartphones and other devices.

Just over half (55 percent) say “a major reason” they use voice assistants is to permit hands-free interaction with devices.

The Pew study affirmed that voice assistant technology is being widely used to remotely control connected systems, including “smart home” lighting and heating devices. In fact, more than a quarter (26 percent) surveyed use voice assistants to connect remotely to those apps and devices.

So where are the newest voice control technologies being integrated in 2018?

Kohler, the global designer of kitchen and bath products, has introduced Konnect. This new platform allows consumers to conveniently personalize their experience with a growing number of the company’s products through voice control.

Claiming to have delivered the first voice-activated product line for the kitchen and bath, Konnect offers support through Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple HomeKit.

Say the word and adjust the company’s lighted mirror, order up a soak with their voice-activated bathtub faucet, pick your spritz with their voice-command shower systems—and, yes, even apply a number of controls to the toilet!

Kristen Hicks at SeniorAdvisor.com says voice-activation improvements like these are helping countless homeowners age in place, by turning lights on and off, keeping grocery and to-do lists, reminding folks to take meds, changing interior temperature settings, using voice-activated technology to be sure doors are locked, and, most importantly, calling for help in an emergency. Hicks says while many home alert systems require reaching a phone or a button, a voice command can be issued without having to move.

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

The post Voice Activated: Do You Talk to Your Tech? appeared first on RISMedia.

Categories: Real Estate

Use Blog Comments to Boost Your Web Traffic

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 15, 2018 - 12:00am

One of the most overlooked and underrated ways to promote your blog or website is within the comment section of other websites and blogs, notes a...

Categories: Real Estate

The Strategic Move Behind a $1 List Price

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 15, 2018 - 12:00am

For years, a real estate professional in Edmond, Okla., had told his sellers that even if they priced their home for just a dollar, the market...

Categories: Real Estate

Old Dog Finds New Home in Coldwell Banker Ad

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 15, 2018 - 12:00am

The real estate brand champions both the work of its agents and the joy of adopting shelter pets in its latest advertisement.

Categories: Real Estate

Startup Turns Buyer Bids Into All-Cash Offers

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 15, 2018 - 12:00am

In a competitive market, some buyers are increasingly losing out to people closing deals with all cash. A startup wants to level that playing...

Categories: Real Estate

Negotiating Home Fixtures: Who Gets What?

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 15, 2018 - 12:00am

Make sure buyers don’t fall in love with a specific item in the house only find out the seller is taking it with them.

Categories: Real Estate

The Recession’s Lingering Impact on Buyers

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 15, 2018 - 12:00am

The recovery has rolled on for more than eight years and builders say a new breed of home shopper has emerged.

Categories: Real Estate

Common Home-Buying Mistakes People Make at Every Age

RisMedia - May 14, 2018 - 2:51pm

(TNS)—No matter the age or life stage, everyone makes mistakes when it comes to home-buying.

Whether it’s picking the wrong location or buying more house than you can afford, the mistakes are often universal, says Ilyce Glink, author of “100 Questions Every First-Time Home Buyer Should Ask.”

“When you’re in your 20s, your life isn’t the same as when you’re retired, and yet you’re both going to make timing mistakes,” Glink says. “You may make location mistakes. You may not think about what you need for every stage of your life, so you buy the wrong size home or make a bad money decision.”

Even so, certain age groups are more susceptible to particular missteps than others. Here are common mistakes homeowners make at each age, and a few ways to avoid them.

20s: Getting the Wrong Type of Mortgage
People in their 20s are just starting their careers and usually have less money saved than older homebuyers. For these folks, paying less for a mortgage is not just a priority, but a necessity.

This can be a bad thing if buyers get into an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) thinking they will earn more money down the road, says Michael Corbett, host of Extra’s “Mansions and Millionaires” and author of “Find It, Fix It, Flip It.”

“Younger buyers might get an adjustable-rate mortgage because the rate is really low; it’s like a teaser rate, and they think, ‘I’m going to get it because I’m improving in my job situation or I’ll pay off my student loan’—but if that doesn’t happen then, when interest rates go up in five to seven years, they’re going to see their mortgage rates double or even triple,” Corbett says.

If the rates on ARMs increase dramatically, there’s a chance the borrower will no longer be able to afford their mortgage payment, which could put the house in jeopardy. Before leaping into an ARM with just a dream of a house and a hope for a bigger paycheck, consider other cost-saving alternatives.

Along with popular programs like FHA loans and VA loans, there are other lesser-known initiatives geared to homebuyers on a fixed income. The HUD-sponsored Good Neighbor Next Door program, for example, offers home-buying assistance for law enforcement officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians and pre-kindergarten through 12th grade teachers.

Along with federal money, there are also state-sponsored grants for first-time homebuyers, which you can typically find on your state’s website.

30s: Not Thinking About the Future
Homebuyers in their 30s blunder by not considering a future family when they’re standing in the middle of downtown condo with gorgeous views and access to a rooftop pool. While snagging the ultimate bachelor or bachelorette pad might seem alluring, it can also cost you money down the road, Corbett says.

“What happens is they end up having to sell—maybe not at an appropriate time—the bachelor pad and get into another house,” says Corbett. “Now they’re doing it under duress instead of planning ahead the first time, so there’s a lot of money lost there.”

If you plan on having a family, it’s important to consider that when you’re home shopping, even if you’re currently single. Glink says to ask yourself these questions before buying a home:

  • Who do I imagine living with in the future?
  • Where do I imagine living?
  • How do I imagine living?

Those answers should be an integral part of what you look for in a home. For example, if you think you might want kids or even a dog, you’ll probably want to choose a home with a backyard versus one near a great nightlife.

40s-50s: Overestimating Your Budget
In your 40s and 50s, you tend to have more money, which can lead to overestimating your budget and buying a house you can’t afford. One way to avoid this is to figure out your lifestyle comfort level, Glink says.

“Just because you can afford a $500,000 home doesn’t mean you should buy one,” says Glink. “If you’re married and both you and your spouse are working, figure out whether or not you can afford the mortgage payment if one of you gets laid off.”

Figuring out your budget is a critical step for buyers of all ages. Even experienced homebuyers can make the mistake of spending at their limit, which can mean making sacrifices that they weren’t prepared to make. Use Bankrate’s home affordability calculator to determine how much you should spend.

The takeaway for buyers in their 40s and 50s is to leave room in the budget for things they aren’t willing to give up—for example, private school for the kids.

60s and up: Falling in Love With That Vacation Home
Many homeowners in their 60s are retired or getting ready to retire. Among the many decisions retirees make is where to live. While some choose to stay where they are, many plan on moving to warmer climates, or even another country.

A costly mistake retirees make, Glink says, is going on vacation, falling in love with the place and moving immediately. Relocating and buying a home is an expensive process, so retirees should be sure they familiarize themselves with a new place before buying.

“Too many retirees make the mistake of going on vacation, and they think, ‘Oh my god, this is great,’ and they go home immediately and they sell their house,” says Glink. “They get there and they hate it. They didn’t spend enough time there.”

Before buying a new house in your vacation paradise, be sure to visit the area in every climate. For example, Florida is great in the winter, but many people might not be comfortable in the humid summer months. The same goes for Northern areas—what’s blissful in one season can be awful in another.

©2018 Bankrate.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

The post Common Home-Buying Mistakes People Make at Every Age appeared first on RISMedia.

Categories: Real Estate

Homeownership Is Becoming Much Pricier

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 14, 2018 - 12:00am

Rapid home price gains in the first quarter, mixed with higher mortgage rates, are basically eliminating any meaningful gains home buyers may be...

Categories: Real Estate

Best Tip to First-Time Buyers: Act Fast

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 14, 2018 - 12:00am

Those who are serious about buying can’t afford to linger.

Categories: Real Estate

Buyers Turn to Crowdfunding to Afford a Home

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 14, 2018 - 12:00am

More aspiring home buyers are increasingly turning to crowdfunding to drum up money for a down payment. 

Categories: Real Estate

Top College Towns for New Grads to Call Home

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 14, 2018 - 12:00am

Some college grads are choosing to stay put in the town where they attended school. Find out the places that offer the best prospects for...

Categories: Real Estate

Which Adult Children Move Home the Most?

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 14, 2018 - 12:00am

More millennials are living with their parents, but the trend is more prevalent among certain races, new research finds.

Categories: Real Estate

Affordable Housing Crunch Prompts Lotteries

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 14, 2018 - 12:00am

The inventory crunch is prominent in San Francisco: 95 apartment units were to be offered at affordable prices recently, which prompted a frenzy...

Categories: Real Estate

Single Women Outbuy Men in Homeownership

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 11, 2018 - 12:00am

The rate is more than double the rate of single males who are also purchasing homes and condos.

Categories: Real Estate

Mortgage Rates Barely Stirred This Week

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 11, 2018 - 12:00am

Following a series of rises in April, mortgage rates are taking a pause so far this month.

Categories: Real Estate

Rising Incomes Provide More Buyer Relief

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 11, 2018 - 12:00am

The increases gave a boost to housing affordability in the first quarter of this year while also helping to offset recent upticks in mortgage...

Categories: Real Estate

The Nation’s Busiest Builders, Ranked

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 11, 2018 - 12:00am

Many homebuilders are reporting hundreds—and even thousands—of closings in 2017, much more than the year prior.

Categories: Real Estate

The Housing Shortage Is Hitting Luxury Too

NAR Daily News Magazine - May 11, 2018 - 12:00am

Several high-end areas are now seeing prices skyrocket from the limited quantity of homes for sale.

Categories: Real Estate

How the On-Demand Consumer Has Changed the Real Estate Industry

RisMedia - May 10, 2018 - 3:48pm

Over the last decade, homebuyers have become more tech-savvy, beginning with a simple shift of traditional in-store shopping and REALTOR® office visits to Cyber Monday shopping and searching for house listings online. As the real estate industry continues to grow, consumers have come to adopt, and expect, a self-sufficient, on-demand technology experience, where they have control over the process.

For the Buyer
Having absolute transparency to browsing house listings online has done numerous things for the real estate consumer, including increasing their overall knowledge and convenience, and making it a much more simpler process to buy a home. Consumers can educate themselves on real estate trends and changes in the industry. Rather than waiting on a third party, or real estate agent, to send them a list of houses, the consumer has the freedom to browse online from the comfort of their home.

Outside of the online experience, companies such as OfferPad allow buyers to browse their homes on their own and during their own timeframe. If interested in touring a home, the customer can simply send a text message and instantly gain access to the home. There is no need for an agent to be on-site, and the pressure is removed from the buyer. If the customer is interested in making a purchase offer, they are free to directly work with OfferPad.

For the Seller
Very similar to a buyer, a homeowner selling their home has more transparency into the market, as well. They have a better insight to what the buyer may be looking for, and possibly an inkling of what they think their home may be worth. Those who have sold a house before through the traditional process know that it can be a long and stressful event. Everything from determining what renovations need to be done to the home, keeping it clutter-free for when strangers want to tour it, worrying about how long the home may be on the market, and expenses that come along with each day, then hoping the right buyer doesn’t fall through…the process can be time-consuming.

Recent real estate industry changes have welcomed technology and alternate ways to buy and sell a house. Emerging companies like OfferPad offer a new way for people to move freely. Those who are looking for a more seamless way to sell their home that offers certainty, and removes much of the pain points, are selecting companies to directly buy their home.

With nearly every industry making great strides to support the on-demand consumer, real estate will need to evolve, and continue bringing innovative ideas and solutions to the homebuyer and seller. For those interested in using OfferPad as a different, hassle-free way to move freely, visit offerpad.com, and type in your address and property information. The company will contact you within 24 hours to provide an offer.

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

The post How the On-Demand Consumer Has Changed the Real Estate Industry appeared first on RISMedia.

Categories: Real Estate